Tag Archive: trusting God

The Ebb and Flow

My life consists–as I am sure many lives do–of an emotional ebb and flow. For me, a lot of my ebb and flow surrounds my feelings regarding my circumstances. And one circumstance in particular that I often allow to dictate my feelings is in regard to my inability to conceive. (You can read more about that here.) Thankfully I am currently experiencing the “flow.” I noticed this when we recently had friends visit with their new baby. I enjoyed him immensely. Sometimes it is just purely painful for me to be around babies. I am better at hiding that pain than I used to be, but my heart still feels like it is being stabbed in those times of “ebbing.” I am thankful for the “flows;” for the days and weeks it hurts less and is not the glaring sore that it is in those other times. The emotional ebbs and flows tend to catch me by surprise. Many times I am not even sure myself whether it is an ebb or a flow sort of day or moment. Shortly before their arrival, I was a little anxious about how I might inwardly respond to being around their little one. But I truly enjoyed snuggling his squishy body and petting his silky hair. Why is it that we like to pet the hair of babies?! Maybe it is just me. But it is sooooo silky smooth and soft!

I am thankful for the “flow” moments and days. I am especially thankful that as I grow in this area of struggle that there is more flowing than ebbing. Either I am growing in my pain tolerance; time is allowing my wound to heal; or I am better understanding God’s character and growing in trusting His plan even when I don’t like it or understand it. Maybe it is a little bit of each of those.

Okay, so I am noticing that God has to teach and then re-teach me the same lessons over and over and over.  I suppose I am not the only one.  But goodness, you would think I would just get it already!  For me, the core lesson (or the primary core lesson) seems to be about trusting God and believing He is good.  These are things I “know” in my head to be true.  I believe the Bible.  And the Bible says God is trustworthy and good.  But my heart is often slow—very slow—to catch on.

Well I have gotten a super mega dose of truth this past week as I have treaded the waters of Beth Moore’s study on the Psalms of Ascent.  It is by far my favorite study of hers thus far.  And this past week’s five days of lessons definitely challenging and convicting for me.

Let me back up a bit…to the end of December.  I was listening to one of our Cru conference speakers share about God’s goodness and was challenged by the notion that many of us (maybe even most if not all believers) would say that God is good.  But we all too often stop there.  We believe God is good…to our friends, our family, our church body.  But we do not believe that God is good to US individually.  She helped me to realize that I struggle to trust God because I doubt His goodness TO ME.  My head knows that God is good—the Bible tells me this.  But I so do not believe that GOD IS GOOD TO ME.

God used this week’s Bible study lessons to bring that to the forefront of my thoughts again.  I get so consumed by the worries and details of this world that I easily forget that God holds all things in His enormously powerful hand.  I lose sight of God’s character and forget that He is for me and not against me.  That, as Beth says, “God is with us and for us even when His face and His favor seem hidden.”

 I was terribly challenged by her claim that “…God’s favor and His person are not synonymous.  If our trust is in manifestation of God’s favor rather than God Himself, we will crumble like dry clay when He calls us to walk a distance of our journeys entirely by faith and not by sight….  The difference between trusting God and trusting what God has done is a fine line we easily can trip over….”

Ain’t  that the truth?!

I would like to think I walk more by faith than by sight.  But I know I don’t.  When things are not visibly going a direction I like or the way I want, I rarely choose to trust God more than what I see is—or isn’t—happening.   When His favor seems hidden or is not on me, I immediately question His intentions toward me.   So often I place my security in the blessings that come from God rather than in God Himself.

Lord, teach me to trust in the One who blesses rather than the blessing itself.

Like a Child

I am often amazed at how often the Lord speaks to me through my daughter. I would guess most of you are not surprised to hear that. Not so much because of my daughter, but because of the nature of parenting. 🙂

I find that if I take even a brief moment to hear what I am saying to K, I hear that Heavenly whisper in my ear saying something like, “Take that to heart,” or “That applies to you, too, you know.”

Take this morning for example. We were getting a few things ready for some new friends to come visit. (We enjoyed our time with them all immensely, by the way and are anxious for a replay sometime soon! Plus I think I have new walking partners AND the start of a couponing group. Woohoo!)

Have you noticed that I get easily distracted? I think it is the influence of my 4 year old. Yeah…let’s go with that.

Anyway, K and I were baking some muffins this morning. Actually, she did most of the work while I washed some dishes. I was quite impressed at her mixing success. And not at all surprised at my own impatience as I sometimes had to repeat myself over and over and over and over and over and….you get it. But it made me realized that I am so like that with God.

We are challenged by the Word to have faith like a child. I am often good at being like a child, but not necessarily in the area of faith; more in the areas of not listening, or not allowing myself to be helped because I can “do it myself.” You know, just being plain stubborn about wanting to do it in my own way and time. Kind of like my 4 year old, who when she asks if she can do something and is told to “wait,” either turns to ask the other parent or in less than 30 seconds says: “how about now?”

I am so that way with God. Aren’t we all? Well, maybe you are much more skilled at submissive obedience than I am. But since you, too, are human …well, I kind of doubt it. We all struggle to submit to our Maker’s ways and plans and timing—just as our children sometimes struggle to submit to our ways, plans, and timing. Go figure.

I don’t even really have to wonder why that is. I am confident it comes down to the core issue of the fall. We do not believe God. We believe the Serpent when he tells us God is lying to us. We substitute the Truth for a lie. And we take matters into our own hands because we think we know better than God. And then we are surprised when we screw it all up.

Thankfully, God already knew we would screw it all up. That’s why He sent Jesus. During a sermon this last week (or maybe the one before that), our pastor said something along the lines of “There is no plan B. Jesus is and always has been God’s plan A.” I really like that. I think we can be secure in knowing that God has always known from before the beginning of time that we were going to mess up repeatedly. But He wanted us around anyway!